How to Identify?
When swimming, I can easily wrongly identified Muskrats as beavers. But once, having seen a beaver, I use the size as a distinguishable characteristics. Further, the shape of the tail and how the animal uses the tail to swim allows me to identify this animal. I rarely see beavers active at daylight, in opposition to Muskrats which I frequently observe during the day.
We combine physical characterics and behavior patterns with location and seasonal aspects to identify species.
Where & When to Spot?
Muskrats can be spotted all year long except winter in wetlands along ponds, lakes, rivers or streams. Best opportunities to observe Muskrats are during early spring in Rapids Park Lachine. With low vegetation it is easier to spot them.
With each photo, we store date and geo-location providing us data about location and season of observation. We also use a tracking utility to save observations in the field when there was no opportunity to take a good shot.